I hear yo-yos are back in fashion. Apparently every twenty years they come around again, uniting a new generation with their parents and beyond. I quite enjoy the idea of computer-centric kids giving grudging props to parents whose rusty but no doubt relatively impressive prowess temporarily exceeds their own. My fleeting childhood memory of yo-yos is combined with bruises as the toy inevitably whacked me in flight. Hurrumph.
Yo-yo-ing isn’t just the physical, as most of us are aware: the vacillation that the toy produces – hopefully due to the volition of the person pulling the string – is also likened to emotional and physical control. Much of the time, though we continue to be the puppetmasters, it doesn’t feel like that.
I am expected to be like this, think like that, but I’m not, so I’ve failed, but it’s okay because it’s valid to think that, because I’m allowed to own my feelings, but they are not feminist or personist or realistic, so I’ve failed.
Or: I’m okay with myself and I look quite good when I smile, but those bags under my eyes, oh it’s all too much, but actually I look strong though is that the aesthetic I really want or should want or does that even matter because it’s simply who I am and that’s okay?
Or: I shouldn’t eat that now or later or at all because I don’t need it and I haven’t earned it but what does that actually mean when I’m human and I want to indulge myself because don’t I deserve a treat sometimes and surely I can get away with it but then what if I lose control and it all comes crumbling down and then I have even more work to do?
Who has the control?
There’s enough erratic noise externally for me to give too much credence to the irrational noise internally. It’s there – that I don’t dispute. But I can turn the volume down. I can choose to ignore it. I can face it calmly and argue it back into its box and ultimately and hopefully chuck the box away.
I pull the string on the yo-yo. I have the bruises to prove it.